Joining forces to serve
our vibrant health
research community

The Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research (MSFHR) and the British Columbia Academic Health Science Network (BC AHSN) have joined forces to create a dynamic and integrated health research organization, Michael Smith Health Research BC, to support the growth and evolution of BC’s vibrant health research system and life sciences sector.


The Province of British Columbia has invested $116.6 million in Michael Smith Health Research BC. This significant funding will enable us to grow the knowledge economy and health research recovery by attracting, developing, supporting and retaining people whose research improves the health of British Columbians, addresses health system priorities and creates jobs.

We thank the provincial government for its continued support of Michael Smith Health Research BC, and for recognizing that a healthy society and a healthy economy go hand in hand.

View the press release at

About the consolidation

The impetus for consolidating MSFHR and BC AHSN was synergy — which literally means the interaction or cooperation of two or more organizations (in this case) to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects. This concept was captured into the new brand, a mosaic and kaleidoscope of colour that together are greater than the sum of its parts. The top right corner creates an upward pointing arrow that forms a distinct, identifiable mark while evoking the idea of forward motion and innovation.

Read the full news release of the October 13 consolidation announcement here

As one organization — and embracing a dual role of “doing” and “influencing” — we are in a much stronger position to work with our partners and stakeholders to strengthen research capacity across the province, support evidence-informed decision making in health care, increase the competitiveness of our life sciences sector, and maximize the social and economic benefits of health research in BC.


As a provincial organization, our work extends across many Indigenous lands and territories throughout British Columbia. We acknowledge with respect and humility that our Vancouver offices are located on the traditional and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.

Although we have a new name, all current funding programs historically offered by MSFHR are running as scheduled; the work of the BC SUPPORT Unit, Clinical Trials BC, and Research Ethics BC is moving forward as planned; and the organization continues to drive knowledge translation to improve the use of research evidence in practice and policy. Programs will continue to support equity, diversity, and inclusion, which is important to nurture inclusive excellence, which in turn drives discovery and helps build a more innovative and impactful health research system.

About this website

Over the next year, the existing websites of Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research and British Columbia Academic Health Science Network will be consolidated here under Michael Smith Health Research BC. As we work to merge our websites, you may notice that some of the links navigate to the individual websites. You can also use the list of quick links below to navigate directly to the information you need.

Take me to MSFHR

If you are looking for information related to funding, visit the MSFHR site.

Visit site

Take me to BC AHSN

If you are looking for information related to patient-oriented research, clinical trials or ethics, visit the BC AHSN site.

Visit site

About us

Board of Directors

Elinor Wilson


Max Blouw

Doug Cochrane

Kathryn Hayashi

Chair, Finance & Audit Committee

Sunny Loo

Lyana Patrick

Geoff Payne

Chair, Governance Committee

Richard Rees

Vice Chair

Ian Rongve

Martin Schechter

Sally Thorne

Senior Leadership Team

Bev Holmes, PhD, C. Dir

President & CEO

Stirling Bryan, PhD, FCAHS

Chief Scientific Officer

Cecillia Colbeck, CPA, CGA

Chief Financial Officer

Terri Fleming, MBA

Unit Director, Research Ethics BC

Danielle Lavallee, PharmD, PhD

VP Research

Alison Orth, BBA, CCRC

Unit Director, Clinical Trials BC

Zena Sharman, PhD

Executive Lead, Organizational Integration & Transformation

Julia White

Director, Communications

Contact us

We’re here to help. Whether you have questions about our funding programs, patient-oriented research programs, clinical trials, or harmonized ethics review process, connect with us at:

1285 W Broadway #200
Vancouver, BC V6H 3X8

1367 W Broadway #420
Vancouver, BC V6H 4A7

About Michael Smith

Michael Smith Health Research BC is named in honour of BC’s first Nobel Laureate, Dr. Michael Smith. A pre-eminent chemist and molecular biologist, Dr. Smith was dedicated to building BC’s health research capacity and nurturing the next generation of research innovators. His distinguished career and longstanding commitment to supporting emerging scientific talent helped establish BC as a hub for world-class health research.